afghans to take care of their own security. we have frain trained over 315,000 mostly without incident. there have been more than 2 dozen cases of green-on-blue, where americans have been killed. if we -- if the measures the military has taken do not take hold, we will not go on joint patrols, we will not train in the field, we will only train in the army bases that exist there. but we are leaving. we are leaving in 2014. period. and in the process, we are going to be saving over the next 10 years, another $800 billion. we have been in this war for over a decade. the primary objective is almost completed. now all we are doing is putting the kabul government in a position to be able to maintain their own security. it is their responsibility.
not america's. >> what conditions could justify staying, congressman ryan? >> we don't want to stay. look... one of my best friends in janesville, a reservist, is in an operating base in east afghanistan right now, our wives are best friends, our daughters are best friends. i want him and all of our tropes to come home as soon as and as safely as possible. we want to make sure that 2014's successful. that's why we want to make sure that we give our commanders what they say they need. we don't want to extend beyond 2014. that's the point we are making. it was just this, i feel like we would be able to -- call this a success. but it's not. what we are witnessing as we turn on our television screens these days is the absolute unraveling of the obama foreign policy. problems are growing at -- problems are growing abroad but jobs are not growing at home. >> he says he are absolutely
leaving in 2014. you are saying, that's not an absolute, but you won't talk -- >> you know why we say that? >> i would like to know why. >> we don't want to broadcast to our enemy, put a date on your calendar, wait us out and then come back -- >> but you agree with the timeline? >> we do agree with the timeline and the transition, but any administration doll in 2013 is assess the situation to see how best to complete this timeline. >> we will leave in 2014. >> what we do not want to do is give our allies reason to trust us less and our enemies more -- we don't want to embolden our enemies to hold and wait out for us and take over i. martha, that's a bizarre statement. 49 of our allies -- hear me. 49 of our allies signed on to this position -- >> we are reading that they want i. 49. 49 of our allies said, out in
2014. it's the responsibility of the afghans. we have other responsibilities. >> which is -- >> but we have -- we have... soldiers and marines and afghan forces murdering our forces over there. the taliban is -- do you think taking advantage of this timeline? >> look, the taliban -- what we have found out and you saw it in iraq martha, unless you set a timeline, baghdad in the case of iraq, and -- and kabul in the case of afghanistan, will not step up. they're happy to let us continue to do the job. international security forces to do the job. the only way they step up is say, fellas, we are leaving. we trained you. step up. step up! >> let me go back i. that's the only way it works. >> let me go back to the surge troops, that we put in there. you brought this up, congressman ryan. i have talked to a lot of troops, i have talked to senior
officer who is were concerned that the surge troops were pulled out during the fighting season. and some of them saw that as a political move. so can you tell me, vice-president biden, what was the military reason for bringing those surge troops home -- >> the military reason was bringing -- by the way, when the president announced a surge, you will remember, martha, he said, the surge will be out by the end of the summer. the military said, the surge will be out. nothing political about this. before the surge occurred, so you be straight with me here, too. before the surge occurred. we said, they will be out by the end of the summer. that's what the military said. the reason for that is -- >> military follows orders. trust me, there are people -- >> sure. >> who are concerned about fulling out. >> there are people who are concerned, but not the joint chiefs. that was their recommendation in the oval office to the president of the united states of america,
i sat there. i am sure you will find someone who disagrees with the pentagon. i upon positive you will find that within the military. but that's not the case here. secondly, the reason why the military said that is you cannot wait and have a cliff. it takes, you know, months and months and months to draw down forces. this cannot wait. >> let me illustrate the issue here. i think this can get confusing. we have all met with general allen in afghanistan to talk about the fighting season. here's the way it works. the mountain pass is filling with snow. the taliban and the terrorists and they come over from pakistan. when it's froze wen snow, they can't do it. that's the fighting season. in the warm months, the fighting gets really high. in the winter, if goes down. when admiral mullen and general petraeus came to congress and said, if you pull these people out before the fighting season has ended, it puts people more
at risk. that's the problem. yes, we drew 22,000 trop troops down last month. but the remaking troops who are there and have the same mission to prosecute counter-insurgency are doing it with fewer people. that makes them less safe. we are sending fewer people out, in all of these hot spots to do the same job that they were supposed to do a month ago -- >> because we turned it over -- we turned it over to the afghan troops we trained. no one got pulled out that didn't get filled in by trained afghan personnel. and he's conflating two be issues. the fighting season that petraeus was talking about and former admiral mullen was the fighting season this spring. that's what he was talking about. we did not pull them out. >> the calendar works the same every year. >> it does work the same every year. >> spring, summer, fall. it is warm or it's not.
they're still fighting us and coming over the passes. they are still coming in to zabull and to kunar and we are sending fewer people to the front to fight them. >> that's right because that's the afghan responsibility. we have trained them. >> not in the east. >> let's move to another war -- >> not in the east?! >> that's the most dangerous place -- >> that's why we don't -- >> that's why we should send american it's you would rather americans go and do the job instead -- >> we are already sending americans to do the job, but fewer of them. >> that's right! we are sending in more afghans to do the job. afghans to do the job. >> move move to the civil war in syria. there are estimates that more than 25,000, 30,000 people have been killed. in march of last year, president obama explained the military action taken in libya, by saying it was in the national interest to go in and prevent further
massacres massacres from occurring there. so why doesn't the same logic apply in syria? >> it's a different country. ites different country. it is five times as large geographically. it has one-fifth the population, that is libbia, five times as large, geographically, it is in a part of the world where they are not going to see whatever would come from that war. it would seep into a regional war. you are in a country that is heavily populated in the midst of the most dangerous area newscast world. and in fact, if in fact, it blows up and the wrong people gain control, it is going to have impact on the entire region, causing potentially regional wars. we are working hand and glove with the turks, with the jordanians and the saudis and all the people in the region, attempting to identify the people who deserve the help, so that when assad goes -- and he will go -- there will be a
legitimate government that follows on, not an al qaeda-sponsored government that follows on. and all of this loose talk of my friend, governor romney and the congressman, about how we are going to do -- we could do so much more in there -- what more would they do, other than put american boots on the ground isn't last thing america needs is to get in another ground war in the middle-east. requiring tens of thousands, if not well over 100,000 american forces. that -- they are the facts. they are the facts. now, every time the governor's asked about this, he doesn't say anything -- he goes up with a whole lot of verbiage, but when he gets pressed, he says, no, he would not do anything different than we are doing now. are they proposing putting american troops on the ground? americans in the air space? inf they do, they should speak
up and say so. but that's not what they are saying. we are doing what we need to do to identify those force who is will provide for a stable government and not cause a regional sunni/shi'a war when assad falls. >> all right. congressman ryan? >> nobody is proposing to send troops to sirria, american troops. lets me say it this way. how would we do things differently? we wouldn't refer to assad as a reformer when he is killing his own civilians, with his russian-provided weapons. we wouldn't be outsourcing our foreign policy to the united nations, giving vladimir putt putin veto power over our efforts to deal with this issue. he has vetoed three of them. hillary clinton went to russia to try to convince him not to do so. they thwarted their efforts. she said they were on the wrong side of history. she was right. this is how the russia reset's not working. where are we?
after international pressure mounted. then president obama saidba assad should go. it's been over a year, the man has slaughtered tens of thousands of his own people and more foreign fighters are spilling into this country. the longer this has gone on, the more people -- groups like al qaeda are going in. we could have more easily identified the free syrian army, the freedom fighters, working with our allies, the turks and the saudis, had we had a better plan in place to begin with, working through our allies. but, no, we waited for kofi annan to try to come up with an agreement to the u.n. that, bought assad time. we gave russia veto power over our efforts through the u.n. and meanwhile, about 30,000 syrians are dead. >> what would my friend do differently? if you notice, he never answers the question -- >> no, we would not be going through the u.n. i. you don't go through the u.d n. we are in the process now and
have been for months, in making sure that help, humanitarian aid, as well as other aid and training is getting to those forces that we believe the turks, the jordanians believe, the saudis believe, are the free force inside of syria. that is underway. our allies were all on the same page. nato, as well as our arab allies, in terms of trying to get a settlement. that was their idea. we are the ones who said, enough. with regard to the reset not working. the fact of the matter is that russia has a different interest in syria than we do. that's not in our interest. >> what happens if assad does not fall in. >> congressman ryan? what happens to the region? >> iran keeps their greatest ally in the region. he is a sponsor of terrorism. he will probably continue slaughtering his people.
we and the world community will lose our credibility on this. what would romney/ryan do about that? >> well, we agree with the same redline they do on chemical weapons. but not putting american troops in, other than to secure the chemical weapons. they are right about that. but what we should have done earlier is work with those freedom fighters, those dissidents in syria. we should not have called assad a reformer -- >> what is your criteria for -- >> we should not have waited for russia to give us the green light at the u.n. to do something. they are still arming the man. iran is flying flights over iraq -- >> and the opposition is being harmed -- >> to help assad. by the way, if we had the status of forces agreement that the vice-president said he would bet his vice presidency on, we would have been able to prevent that. but he failed to achieve that. >> what is your criteaserria for
intervention. >> in syria? >> worldwide? >> what is in the national interest of the american people. >> how about humanitarian. >> it has to be in the strategic national interest of our country. >> no humanitarian? >> each situation will come up with its own set of circumstances. but tut putting american troops on the ground, that has to be within the national security interest of the american people. >> i want to -- we are almost out of time here i. embargos and sanctions and over-flights, they don't put american troops on the ground. if you are talking about putting american troops on the ground, only in our national security interest. >> i want to move on. i want to return home for these last few questions. this debate is historic. we have two catholic candidates, first time on a stage, such as this. i would like to ask you both to tell me what role your religion has played in your own personal views on abortion? please talk about how you came
to that decision, talk about how your religion played a part in that. and please, this is such an emotional issue for so many people -- >> sure. >> in this country, please talk personally thabout this, if you could. congressman ryan? >> i don't see how a person can separate public life from private life or their faith. our faith informs us in everything we do. my faith informs me about how to take care of the vulnerable, how to make sure that people have a chance in life. now, you want to ask basically why i am pro-life? it is not simile because of my catholic faith. that's a factor, of course. but it is also because of reason and science. you know, i think about 10 1/2 years ago, my wife jan and i went to mercy hospital in janesville, where i was born, for our seven-week ultrasound for our first-born child.
we saw that heartbeat. our little baby was in the shape of a bean. and to this day, we have nicknamed our first-born child, leeza, bean. now, i believe that life begins at conception. that's why those are the reasons why i am pro-life. now, i understand this is a difficult issue. i respect people fowho don't agree with me on this. but the policy of a romney administration will be to oppose abortion, with the exceptions for rape, incest and life of the mother. what troubles me more is how this administration has handled all of these issues. look at what they are doing through obamacare, with respect to assaulting the religious liberties of this country. they're infringing upon our first freedom-- the freedom of religion, by infringing on catholic charities, catholic churches, catholic hospitals.
our church should not have to sue our federal government to maintain their religious liberties. with respect to abortion, the democratic party used to say they wanted it to be safe, legal and fair. now they support it without restriction and taxpayer funding with careand foreign aid. the vice-president himself went to china and said he sympathized or wouldn't second-guess their one-child policy of forced abortions and sterilizations. that to me is pretty extreme. >> vice-president biden. >> my religion... defines who i am. and i have been a practicing catholic my whole life. and it is particularly informed pie social doctrine. the catholic social doctrine talks about taking care of those who can't take care of themselves, people who need help. with regard to... with regard to abortion, i
accept my church's position on abortion as a -- what we call a defeata doctrine. life begins at conception. that's my personal judgment. but i refuse to impose that on equally devout christian, muslims and jews and others, unlike my friend here, the congressman. i do not believe that... that we have a right to tell other people that -- women, they can't control their body. it's a decision between them and their director dr. . in my view and the supreme court. i am not going to interfere with that. with regard to the assault on the catholic church. let me make it absolutely clear, no religious institution, catholic or otherwise, including catholic social services, georgetown -- any hospital -- none has to either refer contraception, none has to pay
for contraception, none has to be a vehicle to get contraception in any insurance policy they provide. that is a fact. that is a fact. now with regard to the way in which we differ of, my friend says that... -- i guess he accepts governor romney's position now because in the past, he has argued that there was rape and forcible rape, he has argued that in the case of rape or insist that it was still, it would be a crime to engage in having an abortion. i just fundamentally disagree with my friend. >> congressman ryan? >> all i am saying, if you believe that life begins at conception, that doesn't change the definition of life. that's a principle. the policy of a romney administration is to oppose abortion with exceptions, for rape, incest and life of the mother. now, i have to take issue with
the catholic church and religious libertiesism have you. >> why would they -- why would they keep suing you? it's a distinction without a difference. >> i want to go back to the abortion question here. if the romney/ryan ticket is elected, should those who believe that abortion should remain legal be worried? >> we don't think that unelected judges this make this decision that people through their elected representatives and reaching a consensus in society through the democratic process should make this determination. >> the court, the next president will get one or two supreme court nominees. that's how close row v. wade is. just ask yourself, with robert boring being the chief adviser, for mr. romney, who do you think he's likely to appoint? do you think he's likely to appoint someone like scalia or
someone else on the court, far right, that would outlaw -- outlaw abortion? i suspect that would happen. i guarantee you, that will not happen, we pick two people, we pick people who are open minded. they have been good justices. so keepap eye. >> was there a lit mustest? >> there was no litmus test. we picked people with an open mind, did want come with an agenda. >> we are running out of time. i have a closing question. you have said it here tonight, the two of you respect our troops enormously. your son has served and perhaps some day, your children will serve as well. i recently spoke to a highly decorated soldier who said that this presidential campaign has left him dismayed. he told me, quote, the ads are so negative, and they are all tearing down each other, rather than building up the country. what would you say to that american hero about this campaign? at the end of the day, are you
ever embarrassed by the tone? vice-president biden? >> i would say, to him the same thing i say to my son who did serve a year in iraq, that we only have one truly sacred obligation, as a government. that's to equip those we send into harm's way and care for those who come home. that's the only sacred obligation we have. everything else falls behind that. i would also tell him that the fact that he, this decorated sold your you -- soldier you talked about, fought for his country, that this should be honored, he should not be thrown into a category of a 47% who don't pay their taxes while he was out there fighting, not having to pay taxes and somehow not taking responsibility. i would also tell him that there are things that have occurred in this campaign and occur in every campaign that i am sure both of
us regret. anyone having said, particularly in these, these special, new groups that can go out and raise all the money they want, not have to identify themselves and say the most scurrilous things about the other candidate. it is an abomination. but the bottom line here is, i would ask that hero you reference to take a look at whether or not governor romney or president obama has the conviction to help lift up the middle class, restore them to where they were before this great recession hit and they got wiped out, or whether or not he is going to continue to focus on taking care of only the very wealthy, not asking them to pay any part of the deal to bring back the middle class, the economy of this country. i would ask him to take a look at whether the president of the united states has acted wisely in the use of force and whether or not the slip-shod comments being made by my governor romney
serve our interests very well. there are things that have been said in campaigns that i find... not very appealing. >> first of all, i would thank him for his service to our country. secondly, i would say we are know going to impose the devastating cuts on the military that compromise their service and their safety. then i would say, you have a president who ran four years ago, promising hope and change, who has turned his campaign into attack, blame and defame. you see, if you don't have a good record to run on, then you paint your opponent as someone to run from. that was what president obama said in 2008. that's when he is doing right now. look at all the string of broken promises. if you like your health care plan, you can keep it. try telling 20 million people who are projected to lose their helt insurance if obamacare goes through, or the 7.4 million
senior who is are going to lose it. he said, i guarantee if you make less than $250,000, your taxes won't go up. of 21 tax increases in obamacare, 12 hit the middle class. remember when he said health insurance premiums will go down $2500 per family, for are per year. they have gone up $3,000. he promised to cut the deficit in half four years. we have had four budgets, four trillion-dollar deficits. a debt crisis is coming. we can't keep spending and borrowing money we don't have. leaders run to problems to fix problems. president obama has not put a credible plan on the table in any of his four years to deal with the debt crisis. i have passed two budgets to deal with it. mitt romney has put five years on the table. we have to tack thel debt crisis before it tackles us. the president likes to say he has a plan.
he gave a speech. we asked the budget office, can we see the plan? he gave us a copy of the speech. we asked the cbo, tell us about the budget. they said, it's a speech. we can't estimate speeches. you see? that's what we get in the administration, speeches. we are not getting leadership. mitt romney is uniquely qualified to fix these problems. his lifetime of experience, his proven track record of bipartisanship. and what do we have from the president? he broke the big promise to bring people together to solve the country's biggest problems. and we don't have to settle for this -- >> i hope i will get equal time. >> you will get just a few minutes here -- a few seconds, really. >> the two budgets of the congressman introduced have eviscerated all the things that the middle class cares about. it is knocking 19 million people off medicare. tell kick 200,000 children off of early education, it will
eliminate the tax credit people have to send their children to college t. cuts education by $450 billion. it does -- it does virtually nothing except continue to increase the tax cuts for the very wealthy. you know, we have had enough of this. the idea that the -- he is so concerned about the deficit, i point the out, he voted to put two wars on a credit card i. we are going to the closing statements. >> just a second -- >> not raising taxes is not cutsing taxes. by the way, our budget. >> we have not raised -- >> we have 3% a year -- >> let me -- let me calm things down here just for a minute. i want to talk to you very briefly before the closing statements about your own personal character. if you were elected, what could you both give to this country, as a man, as a human being, that no one else could? >> honesty -- no one else could? there are plenty of fine people
who could lead this country. but what you need are people who, when they say they are going to do something, theyg go do it. what you need are when people see problems, they offer solutions to fix the problems. we are not getting that. look, we can grow the economy faster. that's what our five-point plan is about. getting people out of poverty into the middle class. that means, going with proven pro-growth policies that we know work to get people back to work, putting ideas on the table, working with democrats -- that works sometimes. >> can we get to that issue what have you could bring as a man, a human being? i really, i am going to keep to you 15 seconds. >> he gets 40, i get 15. >> he didn't have 40. >> let me tell you, i... my record stands for itself. i never say anything i don't mean. everybody knows whatever i say, i do. and my whole life has been devoted to leveling the playing field for middle-class people,
giving them an even break, treating main street and wall street the same, holding them to the same responsibility. look at my record. it's all about the middle class. they are the people who grow this country. we think you grow this country, the middle out, not from the top down. >> we turn to the candidates for their closing statements. thank you, gentlemen. that coin toss, again has vice-president biden starting with the closing statement. >> well, let me say at the outset, i want to thank you, martha, for doing this. and the college. we near a situation where we inherited a god-awful circumstance. people near real trouble. we acted to move to bring relief to the people who need the most help now. and in the process, in case you haven't noticed, we have strong disagreements, but you probably detected my -- frustration with their attitude about the
american people. my friend says that 30% of the american people are takers. romney points outs 47% of the people won't take responsibility. he is talking about my mother and father. he is talking about the places i grew up in scranton. he is talking about the people that built this country. all they are looking for, market aall they are looking for is an even shot. when you give them the shot, they have done it, they have diabetic done -- they have done. it they want peace of mind. the president and i are not going to rest until that playing field is leveled, they in fact have a clear shot. and they have peace of mind, until they can turn to their kid and say with a degree of confidence, honey, it is going to be okay. it is going to be okay. that's what this is all about. >> congressman ryan. >> i want to thank you as well, market a. danville, kentucky. and i want to thank you, joe. it's been an honor to engage in
this critical debate we face a very big choice. what kind of country are we going to be? what kind of country are we going to give our kids? president obama, he had his chance. he made his choices. his economic agenda, more spending, more borrowing, higher taxes, a government takeover of health care it is not working. it has failed to create the jobs we need. 23 million americans are struggling for work today. 15% of americans are in poverty. this is not what a real recovery looks like. you deserve better. mitt romney and i want to earn your support. we are offering real reforms for a real recovery for every american. mitt romney -- his experience, his ideas, his solutions, is uniquely qualified to get this job done. at a time when we have a jobs crisis, wouldn't it be nice to
have a job creator in the white house? the choice is clear. a stagnant economy that promotes more government dependentsy, or a dynamic, growing economy that promotes opportunity and jobs. mitt romney and i will not duck the tough issues. we will not blame others for the next four years. we will take responsibility. and we will not try to replace our founding principles. we will re-apply our founding principles. the choice is clear. and the choice rests with you. and we ask you for your vote. thank you. >> thank you both again. thank you very much. this concludes the vice-presidential debate. please tune in next tuesday for the second presidential debate at hoffstra university. i hope all of you go to the polls. have a good evening [applause]
>> the one and only vice-presidential debate, wrapping up, you just heard that vice-president biden, at the end there, complaining about time, saying he wanted to be -- have more time at the end? we have the breakdown of time, in case you are interested at home. this is a rough estimate. but biden had roughly 41 minutes 50 seconds of talk time. and congressman ryan 40 minutes and 5 seconds. this was a much different moderating style by abc's martha
radditz. shy interrupted much more and asked many more pointed questions. republicans are criticizing this style because they feel she interrupted congressman ryan much more before he finished his thoughts and perhaps his charges. this debate was largely a cheerful affair, at least on the vice-president's side of the table, it appeared. for much of the debate, he smiled and laughed in perhaps an effort to diminish ryan on stage. he referred to ryan as "my friend," a holdout from his senate debating days. and that smiling and laughing, it's interesting to see how that will play at home in the split screen, whether will it come off as smug. whether people will not like that, or ift will come off as relaxed and playing down
congressman ryan. he clearly had a lot of comfort in the foreign policy area. but he did vey bumpy road at the beginning, with the libya question and through the intelligence -- threw the intelligence community under the bus, saying they didn't have any answers for him in the early days of the attack. congressman ryan felt comfortable tlooked like in the entitlement reform area, most comfortable and had really a good line, when pushing back on vice-president biden on the 47% video, the governor romney 47% videotape, saying, vice-president bideeb, you can understand that sometimes things come out of your mouth the wrong way. >> yeah, the vice-president made a bit of news there today, saying that it was the intelligence community that told them, according to him, initially, that it was the video that led to the attack on our consulate in benghazi. i mean, he came out explicitly
and said that it was the intelligence community that gave them that information. he went on to say, to talk about that situation, saying we were not told they wanted more security in benghazi, which we will get to, i am sure with chris wallace who, has been doing fact checking. but that's contrary to what we heard on capitol hill from the state department officials themselves, yesterday. paul ryan, for the most part, maintaining his cool, not interrupting joe biden, but joe biden, doing what we saw mitt romney doing, always getting the last word, making sure that no point went un-responded to, paul ryan looking more respectful, but perhaps in the minds of some viewers, more weak. we will find out. let's bring in the whiter for the weekly standard, steve hayes and former campaign manager, joe trippi. we were discussing whether joe biden was having an al gore moment, going to far with the smirking. joe? >> i think he had a very strong
debate. but was diminished, i thought, personally, was diminished by the smirking. i think, look, he surprised me on how aggressive he was and undefensive on the economy, bringing up the 47%. i was very surprised though about how strong ryan was on foreign policy. it's going to be interesting how this plays out because i think, i think women were up for grabbed here. i think biden really scored points. but the last thing we need is another ground war in the middle-east. there were different issues where he really pushed hard. but i don't know know about the likeability and how he over had did, i found it condescending. >> steve? >> there was a moment, talk about this demeanor, there was a mome at the very end, maybe when the most voters were not paying attention, paul ryan started his closing statement and gave what i thought was a sincere thank
you to the moderator and to the crowd and to joe biden. when he thanked joe biden, he was smirking. i thought that came across as very disrespectful and symbolic of the way he handled the night. >> joe biden did what his boss did not, which is continually hammer the 47% comment that mitt romney made and was talking about how mitt romney believes that 30% of the american people are takers, that's my mom, that's my dad, he said. >> the obama campaign has to be very happy about what biden did there. i was surprised that the president didn't do it in the last debate. i think that biden made a lot of strong points. again, i don't know did women find him likeable? the other thing, i thought about it midway through the debate, the obam campaign may not care. they may have sent him out there to drive through the points, hammer them, no one is voting for president of the united
states, whether or not they like joe biden. i would have made him more likeable. but it may have been about scoring points and pushing through, bringing up the 47% and really driving it. >> and paul ryan had the last word, saying, i think the vice-president knows sometimes the words don't always come out the right way on the 47%. we are getting a preview now of how they may handle that. we will get back to you in just a minute. >> one thing's clear. the vice-president has more energy than the president in his first debate. let's go to greta van susteren for what she thought and she has what is coming up. >> i have brit hume here. in watching the show tonight, what do you think that the independents and undecideds saw. >> it depends of what they think of joe biden and his demeanor. if you read the transcript, you might conclude that the vice-president had a very strong debate, that he had a lot to say, that he was strongly critical of governor romney and
his program and held his own. but that's not all there is to it. we had the split screen, much as we did in the presidential debate. and what you saw while paul ryan was talking was smirking, laughing, smiling, mugging, by the vice-president. and my sense about it was that it was so compelling that people probably couldn't take their eyes off of it and it will come down to whether people thought that was attractive or not. myself, i didn't. i thought it was unattractive and rude. i have a feeling it will come across do a lot of people as rude. it looked like a cranky old man debating a polite young man. >> this morning, i gave a speech and i told everybody in the audience, i happen to really like joe biden. i happen to really like paul ryan. i said, these are the two nicest nen in washington. you disagree, but very nice. i thought that ryan was respectful. he said thanks, joe, at the end.
but the smiles, sneers and the "my friend" stuff, i was surprised. it made vice-president joe biden, someone i like, i thought he was very unlikeable. i was surprised. >> on a personal basis, viknown joe biden a very long time. he's a very nice man. if you told him you needed his shirt, he would take his shirt off. but his public discourse has always been marked -- he has this nervous mannerism, which is a smile, that he flashes all the time, sometimes when it's inappropriate. tonight, it was out there for all to see and it was more than that. it was laughing and derisive, sneering, as you suggested. he said a couple of things. he said at one point, when he was asked about the need for more security in benghazi. he said, we were not told that more security is needed -- i don't think that's true. and the $716 billion that goes in the books as a medicare cut
was actually applied to medicare. that's not true either. i don't know whether the fact checkers will get after him about that. >> was it the likeability thing, i think is so important i asked what do the independents, that's what they saw. they don't know what we think about him. the rest of the people saw him as a sneering... rude. >> actually, i think what may have happened tonight, the belief on the left and among a lot of democrats was that mitt romney had taken over the first debate, overwhelmed barack obama, who was more reserved and dominated the whole affair. and one senses that perhaps, this is what vice-president biden was doing, to troy to dominate the debate and one could argue, he did ha, but mitt romney department seem to me and to many people, to have been rude over overbearing or unpleasant or condescending in his behavior toward the moderator and the president. one senses that a lot of people will feel that's exactly how joe
debates in 1960. thinking back, i don't believe i have ever seen a debate in which one participant was as openly disrespectful of the other as biden was to paul ryan tonight. that's what it was. you can talk about the smirk, smile, head shaking, the mugging. it was openly contemptuous and disrespectful. it wasn't just the facial gesture, it was the words. in the course of the night, he dismissed various arguments as malarky, a bunch of stuff, i don't know what these guys are talking about, loose talk and bluster. it was quite an extraordinary -- i have to say, from my experience, unprecedented performance in a vice-presidential debate, by one of the participants. on the specific -- >> chris, let me interrupt you real quick. what was amazing, some of the topics were -- when he was laughing and smirking, one of them, i noticed, was iran, when paul ryan was talking about
iran. listen, they may disagree about how long it takes iran to get a nuclear weapon or how much of a threat iran is, but clearly, iran is a threat eventually. and... the laughing and the smiling, some would think, perhaps, that would be misplaced at that point. it's interesting. there are a lot of people all over, reacting to that. >> yeah, in fairness, i don't think that he was laughing about the situation in iran, i think he was laughing, portraying that poor, dim, paul ryan didn't know wahe was talking about. clearly didn't understand the situation. i thought in some of the specific issues, libya and taxes, i thought that ryan had the clear edge. on entitlements and afghanistan, i thought biden scored. i would also say one thing about ryan, i was told going in that ryan was going to make this a bigdi debate about big issues and it was only the last 10 or 15 minutes that he made the talk about the big choice. here's where obama's going to
take you, here's where he has taken you and here's where we are going to talk -- take you, but he got too far into the policy weeds and wasn't big enough. let's into do a little fact checking. the biggest issue what the vice-president had to say about libya. let's take a clip from the debate. >> the intelligence community told us that, as they learned more faces about exactly what happened, they changed their assessment. that's why there is also an investigation headed by tom pickerring, a leading diplomat from the reagan years, who is doing an investigation, as to whether or not there are any lapses, what the lapses were so they will never happen again itch they wanted more security there. >> well, we weren't told they wanted more security there. we did not know they wanted more security. >> now, there are two issues there. the first one is that he claims that it was the intelligence community that told them that it was a spontaneous protest. now, there are two sides to this story. the state department says that
it never conclude that the consulate attack in libya stemmed from protests over an american-made video, and in fact, they invoked a certain act of terror warnings at the very beginning, so they could do that. on the other hand, i have to say, that the -- the director of national intelligence, james clapper, originally said and i have to quote here, in the immediate aftermath, there was information that ledsitous assess that the attack began spontaneously, following protests earlier that day at our embassy, we provided that the executive branch officials. on the question of we were not told, maybe biden wasn't told, maybe obama wasn't told, but in a hearing yesterday, it was made clear repeatedly that the state department was asked repeatedly by security officials on the ground for more security. and one regional security person who was withdrawn from libya said, i was so frustraided, more with the state department that i came to foal i was dealing with
the taliban inside the state department. no question that whether biden knew or not, the top state department shall officials knew that officials on the ground felt there was a security breach and a very dangerous situation for our diplomats in libiasm. >> chris wallace, thank you. just want to point out, jim mussina in the spin room, right by you, is just saying that, asked about joe biden's smiling and laughing, he is a happy, warrior for the middle class. asked if that's appropriate, he said, he's a happy warrior, repeated a couple of times. >> the spinners are here in full force behind me. there is more spinning here than in a whirlpool store. i will leave it to greg gutfeld. i tried. unsuccessfully. >> that was a good effort. >> a man who requires no imitation, charles krauthammer, live here with his take, right after the break. don't go away. new pink lemonade 5-hour energy?
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>> welcome back to danville, kentucky, live in the spin room. let's go to syndicated columnist, charles krauthammer in washington. your thoughts? >> look, i think the debate happened at several levels. if you read the transcript, i think it is dead even. if you heard it on radio, biden won. if you watched it on television, he lost. in the transcript, if you just look at the raw arguments,ic it was even because each side had points to make. it made them eye think on balance not one side was stronger than the other. if you heard it on radio, what you heard was biden being aggressive, forceful, he was sort of on the attack all the time. and he pushed the argument his
way. he did a lot of interrupting as well. and ryan reacted with, i thought, excessive difference, allowing himself to be cut off and often just ending with a point that you might understand, for instance, when he talked about the catholic bishops, he maid a point after biden had said, oh, the catholic church is not going to be compelled to into anything under obamacare, ryan said, why is it that the bishops are suing the administration? but that was almost an aside and it was lost and over. and by the next question. but if you put them all together and you end up with television, where you saw the demeanor that the vice-president had in regard to ryan, i think that un-did the advantage in rhetoric that he had, in carrying the debate. it was so disrespectful. i agree with chris wallace, it was sort of almost unprecedented. and hugely condescending.
i think that un-did the force of his arguments. i think in the end, if it's television, you lose itch charles krauthammer, thank you. >> pleasure. >> fox news has teamed up with twitter to find out what you had to say about tonight's debate. twitter was keeping tabs on when the discussion on stage triggered a big discussion online. some of the hottest topics trenning tonight on the left, the total volume of tweets throughout the debate, the left side of the screen, more than 3.5 million of those tweets, three topics jumped. first, foreign policy, 26%, second, the economy, 21%. and third, taxes at 17%. for perspective, last week's presidential debate ranked in at a total of 10.3 million tweets. a lot of people using twitter tonight. again, you can tweet us about what you thought about the